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Published on 09/05/2009 at Sat Sep 05 21:36.
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The Denver Broncos announced their finalized 53-man roster Saturday evening, with a few minor surprises but nothing wholly unexpected. However, this roster won’t be finalized for long: an issue with one player will force the Broncos to tweak the roster again Sunday. Who on the roster could possibly be giving the Broncos trouble?

Brandon Marshall, who else?

Marshall isn’t listed among the 53 – he’s still listed undert Reserved/Suspended. So tomorrow, when his team-imposed suspension is scheduled to end, Marshall will have to be officially added back to the Broncos roster. Whether he likes it or not.

Marshall’s return does bring up some very real questions: what do the Broncos do to make room? If they add a player released by another team this weekend, how do they tweak the roster? They have several options. Let’s break it down.

UPDATE: This article was originally published with “possible PUP-list candidates” based on current injuries. My understanding of the PUP list was incorrect; a player can only be placed on this list at the start of training camp, three weeks before the 53-man roster is set. The team then has until six weeks into the regular season to activate them.

(You would think after covering this very topic and writing about it extensively over the past three seasons that this would have stuck. Such is the art of navigating the complicated world of NFL PUP lists/practice squads/waived-injureds/etc. *Oops.* The Broncos’ only option to make moves around their roster is to release a player (see below). I apologize for the misunderstanding.)

There’s also a good chance the Broncos could release another player outright to make room for Marshall. Here are some players on the bubble who could be getting a belated visit from the Turk Sunday.

  • OT Brandon Gorin – Hard for me to see the Broncos keeping two backup tackles when they have Russ Hochstein, who plays everywhere.  This was the guy I left off my prediction post in Marshall’s stead.
  • WR Chad Jackson – The receiver could very well take the place of another receiver.  Jackson would be the guy.
  • RB LaMont Jordan – OK, I’m bitter, sue me.  This guy is bigger and can block better than Darius Walker, but that’s about it.  Forgive me for wanting a player with upside at my fourth running back roster spot.
  • S Josh Barrett – Barrett was on the bubble for a roster spot to begin with; his injury status certainly doesn’t solidify his spot in the locker room.
  • DE/OLB Jarvis Moss – When push comes to shove, will the Broncos stick with their decision to stick with Moss?
  • DL Le Kevin Smith – I don’t think Smith will be released, but is it possible he will be placed on Injured/Reserve?  Reports have surfaced indicating his knee injury is actually a torn meniscus, and that the team signed Vonnie Holliday in part because of this injury.
  • LB Darrell Reid – Until his preseason-meltdown-saving interception Thursday, the outside linebacker hadn’t been playing well.  He lost his starting job to Mario Haggan in camp and had all of four tackles in three preseason games.  With nine linebackers on the roster, Reid’s spot was by no means a lock, and I actually wavered back and forth on Reid when predicting my final 53 prediction roster.  You heard it here first…

Finally, a semi-related note. If recent events are any indication, the Broncos will continue to adjust their roster by bringing in players waived by other teams.  Marshall’s return is a sure thing, but it’s likely they’ll do their due dilligence on other teams’ released players (like, say, New England‘s).  Will they invest in a quarterback while Simms and Orton are hurt, like Jeff Garcia or Brian Brohm? Will they take a look at former Boise St. running back Ian Johnson, who has experience in the zone blocking scheme and is a national headliner to boot? Keep an eye on the couple hundred players released over the past 48 hours; a few of them might wind up in Denver.

And if/when that happens, expect more of the possibilities listed above to become a reality.

  • Ian Henson

    Darrell Reid can also play Full Back in goal line situations. Like he did in Indianapolis. I pray that we’re looking at those defensive linemen that the Giants cut today. They come from a great system and the best of them is better than our worst.


    I’ve been doing some reading on the PUP and from what I have read the player must have been first put on the active PUP list, prior to training camp as a result of failing a pre-training camp physical.

    Then, if the player remained on the Active PUP list all TC and was not activated, then they could be moved to the reserve PUP list, which would keep them out until after week 6.

    Is my understanding of the PUP inaccurate? I’m not sure we have any players that spend training camp on the active PUP list.

  • WhidbeyBronco
  • Kyle

    Thanks BF, my bad.


    I made the exact same mistake in several posts, which is why I read up on it. I thought that they could add a person to the reserve list prior to the start of the reg season, but didn’t realize they had to be on the active list first.

  • Thomas

    Why is everyone so upset about Walker being cut? Jordan is much better I don’t care if he didn’t give 100% in the preseason, come regular season you’ll see Jordan pounding it in the end zone multiple times if we end up keeping him.

  • Robert

    Jordan is no where near the goal line back Hillis is now. He no longer has the power he used to and is a smaller back than Hillism. Nice try though.

  • Gerry B

    I wouldn’t mind seeing most of those players listed get cut. This team needs to be aggressive and start claiming some of these free agents that just got released.

  • BroncoinVA9986

    CHase Daniel got cut yesterday too

  • Joe

    Schefter is reporting that raiders traded their 2011 first round draft pick for Richard seymour. Wow

  • (dee)


    The deal is done. Wow, wonder what Pats fans think of this? To me it is a smart decison… we can sign Seymour once he leaves the Raiders after this garbage year they are about to have.

    As a Pats fan I would be encouraged we are getting a Top 5 pick out of someone that may have left for nothing.

    Seymour one of the faces of the Franchise gets traded… just goes to show no one player is bigger than the TEAM.

  • anthony33

    Question of the day:
    What happens when Brandon Marshall steps back on the field today?
    Is the drama over and he decides to get serious or is he going to continue to be a major distraction?

    Question 2
    Which QB will start on Sunday?

  • kerry

    boy that sure sucks that the Raiders got Seymour. i mean it really F**KING sucks! and we traded for Smith from New England. McDaniels should have just gone the extra step and offered up our 2011 first round pick.

  • anthony33

    Read what PFT had to say about the Raider trade. Very smart on New Englands part and very stupid (if they don’t sign him to a long term extension) by the Raiders. Plus he is a 3-4 guy and the Raider employ a 4-3. Consider it stupid.

  • WhidbeyBronco

    Question 3. Will Josh be smart and go pick up one of the several QB’s out there who are better than who we have now…

    BTW Dee… watch NE’s defense this year without the locker room forces of Seymour, Seau, Asante and Bruschi. everybody knows the hood has no loyalty, they’ve been buying into the system while they’re winning &/or with vet leadership… Doesn’t seem like a move that would make me happy as a NE fan hoping to make a run this year!!

  • Roy

    Trade a first round pick for a 30yo defensive end, who we may not have been able to resign? Really? With all of the talk of Patriots West and McSomethingderogatory, more “he is destroying our future” talk is the last thing McD needs. I think that was a good non-trade on our part.

  • Robert

    Who is better than who we have now? Streaky, old and can only play 3 games without getting hurt Garcia? Seriously? Who? Brian Brahm?